Painter released

Jo and Rhys Williams competing in a nighttime navigational competition in East Hampshire

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French painter Louis Garneray, who was captured by the British in 1806 and imprisoned on a prison hulk in Portsmouth Harbour, was released on this day in 1814.

Unlike many French prisoners who earned money by making scrimshaw (engravings on whalebone), Garneray painted portraits of the guards selling them for up to a shilling.

He came to an arrangement with a Portsea dealer who thought his seascapes ‘not at all bad for a Frenchman’, and paid £1 for each – from John Sadden’s The Portsmouth Book of Days.